Monday, 26 September 2011

Where have all the flowers gone..?

Last weekend’s trip to Geraldton was, as expected, delightful. It was a pleasant drive up the coast road, lunch at Jurien Bay, where I had one of the best long macchiato’s  I’ve ever had outside Leederville.

On then to Geraldton, listening to “Harvest” and “Rust Never Sleeps” by Neil Young, Great stuff.

I felt really sorry for Chantelle. She had applied some skin cancer cream to her face and accidentally got some on her lips. No problem until she woke up next morning and her lips and inside of her mouth were red raw and blistered. Well if that stuff burns skin cancer off your face, imagine what it does to the more sensitive area of the lips and mouth. Not very pleasant at all.

As usual it is always good to see the grandchildren. Andrew 14, Lateesha 13, Jasmine 10 and Henry 7. Andrew is taller than me now and Lateesha is the same height. I know that’s nothing to brag about, but everything is relative.
Lunch with the Grandchildren

 Andrew plays this sophisticated game called “Guitar Hero”, I’m not going to go into the complexities of it, suffice to say, it’s way above my head and Andrew plays like a Master. In fact I believe he is in the top 400 in the world. Very impressive.

On the Saturday morning we went to see Lateesha play her final game of netball, which her school team won easily. Lateesha played very well. A beautiful young lady in the making.

Jasmine is a very pleasant and attractive, soon to be teenager. Being 10 years old is almost a teenager isn’t it?

Henry is a bundle of high explosive energy, in a nice way. At 7 years of age he knows more about computers and similar devices then I could ever know. It’s a whole different world to the one I live in, and no doubt if he applies himself, he will go a long way.

On the way home on Monday I was hoping to be swamped in Wildflowers, but alas it was not to be. I came back through Mingenew and down the Midlands Road, through Coorow, Moora and Gingin. I had to go off the beaten track at Coorow to see a decent display of wildflowers. I had expected a mass of wildflowers all along the road to Perth!

I’ll plan it better next time and do a bit more homework and allow more time to explore. Nonetheless, the drive back to Perth along the Midlands Road was delightful. It is such a beautiful country we live in, I really must make more of an effort to take these mini breaks and get out and about a bit more.

Kambalda maybe next, to see brother Phil? Now that would bring back some memories. Scary!

Stay tuned.

Friday, 16 September 2011

It's Wild Flower Season

I've heard the wildflowers in Western Australia are spectacular this year. As it turns out I'm off to Geraldton for the weekend to visit Chantelle and 4 of the grandchildren. I'm really looking forward to the visit including the drive up and back.
Chapman Valley - Geraldton WA

I'm setting off today (Friday) up the fairly recently completed coast road, which is nothing more than and extension of Wanneroo Road. It is a beautiful drive following the ocean, where I'll stop off in the very pretty town of Jurian.

I'll stay with my eldest daughter Chantelle in Geraldton and probably return to Perth on Monday. The kids get older every year (wow, that's profound!), and the things that used to entertain them no longer do. For example, Andrew is 14 and Lateesha 13. Can you remember when you were that age?

I can, it wasn't that long ago, and from memory I wasn't all that interested in hanging around the oldies. And Geraldton isn't exactly buzzing with things to do.

We may go to the pictures (that's movies for you youngsters) and the pool, where I'll sit and read the Weekend Oz or a book on economics or something similarly exciting, while the mob splashes about.

Me amongst the Grandchildren - I love it!
Driving back to Perth on Monday, I intend taking the inland route through Mingenew and Moora to check out the blooms. It's a beautiful drive, not too long, not too short (About 4 to 5 hours depending on stops) and hopefully not too much traffic.

I must say I do enjoy the Geraldton trips and catching up with children and grandchildren. Who cares if there's not much to do, the mere sight of my own flesh and blood is more than sufficient. They are uplifting - just like wild flowers!!

Monday, 5 September 2011

Father's Day!

Well another Father's Day has come and gone, my 35th as a father. I have to admit to being somewhat cynical about all those various 'Days', including 'Father's Day', 'Mother's Day', 'Valentines Day' etc, etc, and sad to say of late 'Christmas Day'.

Not that I've got anything against remembering and acknowledging the real meaning behind some of these 'Days', particularly 'Mother's Day', 'Father's Day' and Christmas Day.

Sometimes, as forgetful, pre-occupied creatures we do actually need to be reminded about certain significant and meaningful occasions in our otherwise busy lives.

My main beef is the over commercialisation of these important occasions. Marketers have a field day whenever one of these 'Days' looms on the horizon. Major corporations and smaller retailers lick their lips in anticipation of the opening of the proverbial wallet.

Poor, stressed out consumers become poorer and more stressed out deciding what useless, soon to be forgotten present to buy this year in order to 'prove' their love for the recipient of the gift.

Now, don't get me wrong, I am all for giving gifts, to anyone, not just family and friends. But why should it take on marketing led significance at certain times of the year, together with all the stuff that goes with it?

It's truly delightful to present a loved one or friend with a gift for no other reason than that person came to mind and resonated in the heart. It can happen at any time of the day, at any time of the year.

Personally I was stoked with a phone call and SMS from Chantelle and Melissa saying "Happy Father's Day, Dad. I love you."  What more could a father ask for? It's more to do with what's in the heart than what's in the wallet (or credit card).

Don't tell the economists though, it's bad for GDP, but that's another story.